On April 28, 1945, American forces from the 88th Infantry Division fought against German soldiers in the city in northeastern Italy.
Mion was barely a teenager when the battle migrated to her village of San Pietro. When German soldiers opened fire near her farm, she hid with her mother in the attic.
When she woke up the next morning, American troops had taken the freshly baked Christmas cake her mother had left for her on the window sill.
At least 19 American soldiers were killed or wounded during the battle, and many American tanks were wiped out. Subsequently, the locals in Vicenza established relations with the American army, and welcomed the soldiers with bread and wine.
‘I will never forget’
Military personnel are collaborating with the US National Archives to obtain vintage combat films and photographs from the fighting that took place in the city.
The footage shown at the ceremony documents the friendship between the US military and the people of Vicenza after the fighting slowed.
“This warm welcome by the people of Vicenza continues to this day,” said Gumlak, commander of the US Army garrison in Italy.
Speaking of Miyun’s reaction to the theft of her gateau after the initial joy of her birthday, he added, “Her happiness turned to disappointment later when the ingenious American soldiers stole her birthday cake.”
“I feel good when I give her the cake,” said Wallis, a soldier with the Military Police.
Mayon wiped tears from her eyes as hundreds of onlookers including American and Italian soldiers, war veterans, police and local residents watched the emotional exchange.
“Tomorrow, we will eat that dessert with all my family who remember this wonderful day that I will never forget,” said Myeon.